High-ranking officials from Guangdong province and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region attend an online meeting on deepening cooperation on Sept 1, 2022. (PHOTO/HKSAR GOVERNMENT)
HONG KONG – The governments of Guangdong province and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region will establish 13 task groups in areas such as anti-pandemic controls and cross-boundary travel to strengthen the collaboration mechanism between the two sides.
The consensus was reached during an online meeting between high-ranking officials from Guangdong and the HKSAR on Thursday. The meeting was attended Hong Kong Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu, Chief Secretary Chan Kwok-ki, Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po, five bureau heads of the HKSAR government as well as provincial leaders of Guangdong province and municipal leaders of Shenzhen.
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To deepen cooperation between Hong Kong and Shenzhen, the officials also agreed to reshuffle the task groups into 19 groups covering the Qianhai special economic zone, the connectivity of infrastructure, and youth development
According to a press release issued by the HKSAR government late Thursday, the 13 task groups will also cover areas including the Northern Metropolis, the Nansha Plan, innovation and technology, finance, commerce and trade, youth employment, entrepreneurship and internship, promoting legal and dispute resolution services, and maritime, aviation and logistics. The working groups will start their work “as soon as possible”.
To deepen cooperation between Hong Kong and Shenzhen, the officials also agreed to reshuffle the task groups into 19 groups covering the Qianhai special economic zone, the connectivity of infrastructure, and youth development.
As for cross-border travel, both Guangdong and Shenzhen governments have agreed to set up a working group to discuss the implementation details of the "pre-departure quarantine" proposal raised by the Hong Kong government.
Under the program, mainland-bound travelers from Hong Kong will undergo quarantine in Hong Kong first before entering Shenzhen in a closed-loop mode to meet the "7+3" quarantine requirement of the mainland.
A spokesman for the Chief Executive's Office said that the HKSAR government will not "lie flat" in its fight against COVID
In a separate statement, a spokesman for the Chief Executive's Office said that the HKSAR government will not "lie flat" in its fight against COVID. The government will "continue to contain the number of confirmed cases, better manage risks and enhance our capability to respond to contingencies in order to prevent the healthcare system from overloading."
Guangzhou and Hong Kong will also strengthen cooperation on the development of Nansha. “The HKSAR fully supports Nansha in developing as a high-standard gateway for opening up within the GBA, whilst expanding the scope of development for Hong Kong and its industries at the same time,” according to the release.
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Hong Kong will aim to seize the opportunities brought about by Qianhai as a modern service industry hub. In particular, the HKSAR government will work to promote cooperation between Hong Kong and Shenzhen on both hardware and software including infrastructure and systems, particularly in expediting the development of the northern New Territories.
In terms of promoting financial opening up and innovation, the HKSAR government and the Qianhai authorities will jointly promulgate 18 new measures to facilitate the development of cross-boundary business for venture capital and private equity funds, encouraging the funds to seize the immense opportunities arising from the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.